Constantine Klosteridis, pizza shop owner

October 10, 2008|By JACQUES KELLY

Constantine "Gus" Klosteridis, a retired baker and Howard Street pizza shop owner, died of cancer complications Saturday at the University of Maryland Medical Center. The Timonium resident was 85.

Born in Baltimore and raised near Patterson Park, he graduated in 1941 from City College and then enlisted in the Navy. He was stationed at Camp MacDonough Naval Training Center in Plattsburg, N.Y., and at Fort Pierce, Fla.

He earned a bachelor's degree at Loyola College and joined his father and brother in their Athens Baking Co. on Bouldin Street in Highlandtown, which they expanded to mass-produce hamburger rolls. The business was later known as Automatic Rolls Inc.

In 1970, he joined his son, Basil Klosteridis, who lives in Timonium, in a new venture, Pizza Palazzo at Howard and Centre streets. Family members said they used a thin-crust pizza recipe learned from a baker friend in Portland, Maine, near where the Klosteridis family vacationed. The pizza restaurant closed in 1988 when the city condemned the block for light rail staging.

"He was referred to by our customers as a father-like figure. He never turned down anyone for a meal. It was so popular with travelers from the old Greyhound bus station that a concession there closed down," Basil Klosteridis said. "We stayed open Thanksgiving and Christmas to feed the travelers."

The pizza he baked was voted No. 1 in the city by the City Paper and the old Channel 13 Evening Magazine in the 1980s.

In his free time, Mr. Klosteridis enjoyed boating, fishing and golf in Maine. He also cooked for family and friends.

Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. today at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of the Annunciation, Preston Street and Maryland Avenue, where he was a member.

In addition to his son, survivors include his wife of 59 years, the former Sophia Hoimes; two daughters, Thalia Bussard of Timonium and Renee Tobin of Gambrills; a brother, John Klosteridis of Timonium; two sisters, Georgia Anderson of Towson and Helen Padussis of Timonium; and eight grandchildren.

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